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May 5, 2014
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Junior guard D.J. Newbill earned Team MVP honors to highlight the 35th Annual Nittany Lion Basketball Banquet, sponsored by the Penn State Hoops Club, Sunday afternoon at the Penn Stater.
Newbill led the charge in what was the strongest Penn State season in Patrick Chambers' tenure. The Philadelphia product finished second in the Big Ten in scoring with 17.8 points per game, earning All-Big Ten and NABC All-District honors at season's end.
Tim Frazier capped off his illustrious career as the recipient of the Coaches Award. Penn State's all-time in career assists, Frazier produced a well-balanced fifth-year senior season with Top 10 showings in Big Ten scoring, assists and steals throughout the year.
Frazier, along with Zach Cooper and managers Austin Buntz and Derek Gerberich were honored as seniors for their dedication to the Penn State program after the last several years.
A full rundown of awards follows:
Dave Phillips Unsung Hero Award - Patrick Moore (manager)
This award is presented annually to a member of the Penn State basketball program whose selflessness consistently provides an outstanding example to his teammates. Like Dave Phillips, who was a longtime fan and avid supporter, Patrick Moore places the team first and is steadfastly dedicated to the Penn State basketball program. Other than when he grants the media an occasional interview, Moore normally blends in on the sideline as he is busy at work as the team's longest-tenured manager. Whether it's a big hello as he enters the office, a funny story to share in the locker-room, a fist pound after practice or a loud "Go Penn State!" prior to each game - there is no doubt how much Moore loves the team and in return how much the teams loves having him around.
Most Improved Player Award - Brandon Taylor
This award is presented annually to the Penn State basketball player who through his commitment, dedication and hard work has improved the most during the past season. In our six conference wins, Brandon Taylor was third on the team in scoring with 11.5 points per game, while shooting 46 percent from 3-point range. Additionally he led the team in both 3-pointers made and free throw percentage as well as finishing second in blocks.
Scrappiest Award - Alan Wisniewski
This award is presented annually to the Penn State basketball player who committed every day to working his hardest and repeatedly sacrificed his body for the betterment of the team. Alan Wisniewski is no doubt is one of the hardest workers and dedicated leaders of our team, both on and off the court. He is equally scrappy in the classroom, earning an esteemed engineering internship this summer. Although he often is forced to show up late to practice because of academic commitments, Wisniewski wastes no time getting into the action each day. For all his contributions to the team, he was awarded a scholarship last season.
Scholastic Achievement Award - Kevin Montminy
This award is presented annually to the Penn State basketball player whose hard work and dedication in the classroom demonstrate a commitment to reach his full potential. Kevin Montminy has come as close as it gets to his potential as he currently holds a 3.9 cumulative grade-point average with a stretch of five-consecutive semesters of earning a 4.0. He has been a member of the Dean's List each semester at Penn State. He also is a Big Ten Distinguished Scholar and two-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree while completing the Smeal College of Business' MAAC program.
John Lawther Most Valuable Player Award - D.J. Newbill
This award is named after one of the NCAA's all-time most winning coaches, John Lawther, who guided the Nittany Lions to the 1942 NCAA tournament, and is presented annually to Penn State's most outstanding player. D.J. Newbill's efforts on the court coupled with his skill of the game of basketball undoubtedly led his team during the past year. He once again led the Nittany Lions in scoring, which was good for second in the Big Ten and in doing so, he passed the 1,000-point plateau and became just the third Nittany Lion to post back-to-back seasons of 500 points. Newbill's efforts earned him a spot on the All-Big Ten and NABC All-District Second Teams.
Coaches Award - Tim Frazier
This award is presented annually to the basketball player who best exemplifies the characteristics of a Penn State basketball player. Tim Frazier truly embodies the essence of Penn State Basketball: play hard, play smart, play together, and play with pride. He has given so much to Penn State over his time here both on and off the court. This year he was named All-Big Ten for a second time, became the Nittany Lions all-time assists leader and is only the second Big Ten player in league history to end his career with at least 1,000 points, 600 assists and 500 rebounds. Frazier also was named a national finalist for the Senior CLASS Award and next week will earn his second Penn State degree in Communications. He has truly been an ambassador for this university and embodies everything it means to be a student-athlete.